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Sumter Historic Trust receives award

By LEILA CASE

AMERICUS – The Sumter Historic Trust has received the Georgia Historical Society’s top award in affiliate programs for the 2016 Summer History Camp, a hands-on approach for youth to explore local history.
Elyse Butler, outreach coordinator at the Georgia Historical Society (GHS) in Savannah, awarded the Roger K. Warlick Local History Achievement Award in Programs to SHT, presenting the handsome engraved plaque to Kim Christmas, chairman of the Summer History Camp, Jessi Simmons, SHT president, and Meredith Owens, vice president. The award is named for a former GHS president.
“Congratulations to the Sumter Historic Trust for being selected for this annual award that recognizes the best work in sharing local history across our state,” said Butler in making the presentation last Thursday at the Lee Council House, the Trust’s headquarters.
Simmons welcomed Trust members and friends gathered for the event, saying, “We are deeply honored to receive this award given by the Georgia Historical Society and thrilled the 2016 Summer History Camp was a big success. We’re especially grateful for the generosity that made it all possible: the Mix Foundation, the Charles Crisp Endowment Fund, history camp committee, board members and volunteers – it takes a village.”
Christmas expressed sincere appreciation, saying, “We are honored to be selected for this award from the Georgia Historical Society.”  And she gave details of the varied agenda campers experienced during last summer’s day camp
She explained the Trust’s Summer History Camp for rising fifth and sixth graders is an opportunity for campers to explore and learn about local history through a hands-on experience and she announced dates for the 2017 week-long camp is Monday-Friday June 19-23 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Campers will have a week of fun and learning local history through workshops, tours and hands-on activities that include American Indian, the county’s first settlers, the Civil War and post war era, agriculture and how it changed through the years, WWI, WWII and post era, Civil Rights era, etiquette, early aviation and a tour of South Georgia Technical College. The week concludes with a ride on the SAM Shortline train from Americus to Plains and tour of the Jimmy Carter Boyhood Home.  Snacks and lunch are provided daily.
Butler explained the Trust has been a member of the Georgia Historical Society’s Affiliate Program since 1997. The said the program consists of historical, genealogical and patriotic associations across Tennessee, South Carolina and Georgia. The efforts of the GHS Affiliate chapter members plays a vital part in preserving and sharing Georgia’s history and helps to implement GHS’s mission on a local level to collect, examine and teach Georgia’s history. GHS recognizes affiliate chapters that go above and beyond in the field of public history.
Registration of the 2017 Summer History Camp is now open. For more information, please visit the Sumter Historic Trust website at www.sumterhistorictrust.org and click on “History Camp” or contact Kim Christmas at 813-967-6448.